Visiting London for work or study?

Top 5 tips for finding great accommodation

Travelling to London for an extended work stay can be daunting. Our team at Doctor in the House believe that one of the best things you can do to feel comfortable in “The Big Smoke” is to choose great accomodation within the right area for you. We’ve put together a list of tips to help you begin your search for accommodation in London.

Think of London as a cluster of small towns joined together, making one big city

London is a big place with a population of more than 9 million. We recommend starting by breaking the city down into smaller parts. Greater London has 32 boroughs, made of numerous small town centres with their own tube or train stations, high streets, and cultures.
Start by locating the London borough in which you will be working. Then, use your maps to locate areas that you will be able to commute from to narrow down your search
For example, if you were working at King’s College Hospital you would be in the borough of Lambeth. There are several areas nearby that you could choose to live in including Brixton, Camberwell, Clapham, Stockwell and Herne Hill. You could then read about those areas on Google and pick which area might suit you most.

Research the best ways you can get to your place of work

London’s transport system is one of the most extensive and reliable in the world, and there are many ways travel around the capital. The city has a range of public buses, trains both overground and underground, boats, bicycles, and electric scooters.
Some commutes are more difficult than others, even if two places are close as the crow flies. It is worth researching transport links between your workplace and where you might live. You should start by using Google Maps or CityMapper, which is an app to find your route. Bicycle hire apps such as Santander Cycles are simple to download and could prove useful if you want to travel quickly on the roads or avoid the heat of the underground.
Decide your own limit on your commute-length and begin your search to find the right area  for you to call home. 

Make sure that your accommodation has all facilities you need for a comfortable stay

We’ve all booked or purchased things online and later discovered that we’ve misread or missed vital information that we’ve later come to regret.
For example, if you plan on staying in London for six months and you only realise upon arrival that there is no access to a washing machine during your stay - you will have pay the price for a local launderette. Or, it could be a less costly mistake, such as realising that you will only have access to a bath rather than a shower. Make sure your accomodation has features that are important for you to have a comfortable stay.
Selecting the correct accommodation is certainly a delicate decision that is worth taking time over. We encourage our Guests to make sure they have checked that they have thought through their needs thoroughly before confirming a booking.


London is famous for being an expensive city. Try to keep an eye on the price of things and on your spending. It is very easy to spend money in London and after an iced latte in the morning and a sandwich for lunch, along with your daily transport costs you can easily spend £30. You should try to prepare for, and understand, the potential costs you could incur by selecting a accomodation near tempting cafes and restaurants.
There are a number of transport zones in London, and travelling on public transport between these zones comes at a price. You may think it wise to rent a room in zone 4 at a lower rate but then realise, on arrival, the significant additional transport costs. You might be wiser to secure more expensive accommodation in zone 1 or 2 where you can walk to your place of work.
London has a huge and thriving hospitality business, but we don’t advise that you eat out every night! Making sure you have access to a kitchen will save you a great deal of money, you’ll be able to cook yourself some tasty affordable meals in the comfort of your home, meals out and takeaways are delicious but can seriously hurt your budget if you are trying to be frugal. Keeping an eye on the price of treats is important given the cost of living in London.

Think about what you want from a home and what your life in London will be like

Consider what your life will be like in London, and then assess what you want and need from your accommodation.
If you are working a Monday to Friday 9-5, you may wish to make sure there are plenty of local restaurants or cultural spots to visit in your spare time, London is full of fantastic eateries and wonderful free cultural activities.
If you’re doing a mix of work and study whilst you’re here then you will probably wish to have a room with desk or table space to study. You may also consider selecting studio or flat accommodation rather than a homestay to ensure that your place will be quieter and you don’t get distracted.
If you’re mixing work with study or if you’re working changeable shifts then it might be wise to find accommodation very close to your place of work, given that transport is less plentiful in the middle of the night and you might not want a long journey home after a night shift.


London is one of the greenest cities in Europe and there are parks, greens, commons, heaths and wetlands across the city. You will never be too far from one of these spaces. We suggest you take advantage of this whenever you can, and whatever your schedule is. London is a busy bustling city and a little time out to relax in peace amongst the grass and the trees away from the busy streets will do wonders for your wellbeing.

We want you to enjoy your time in London, and we know by choosing the right accommodation in an area good for you will help you experience this brilliant city. Doctor in the House offers a free personal booking service.

Our experienced booking team will be on the end of the phone or available by email to help you make the right choice. A member of our team will talk you through your booking, the accommodation and the area you have in mind to ensure your choice is right for you and that you enjoy one of the world's most exciting cities. 

Doctor in the House Accommodation bookers will be delighted to help you arrange your stay for your next professional visit to London. Find out more.